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January 26, 2021

California added to SNAP online pilot program

CALIFORNIA—U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue recently announced the approval of a California and Arizona request to provide online purchasing of food to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) households.  This approval will allow these states to expedite the implementation of online purchasing with currently authorized...

Premiere Raspberries closing, laying off hundreds

Premiere Raspberries
WATSONVILLE—While some will be celebrating the birthday of activist and labor leader Cesar Chavez on March 31, a major raspberry grower in Watsonville will close its doors, and hundreds of employees will be laid off. A representative at Premiere Raspberries, LLC confirmed the closure Thursday...

USDA announces new feeding program

WASHINGTON, D.C.—U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced March 17 a collaboration with the Baylor Collaborative on Hunger and Poverty, McLane Global, PepsiCo and others to deliver nearly a million meals per week to students in a limited number of rural schools closed due...

Tri-county dairy farms showcased in new exhibit

dairy california history
WATSONVILLE—A new exhibit at the Agricultural History Project (AHP) has been set up to give visitors a glimpse into the dairy industry in Santa Cruz, Monterey and San Benito counties. Dozens of early-day milk bottles make up the bulk of the display, but numerous butter...

Ag Tech Summit returns to Hartnell College

NOTE: This article was contributed by the King City Rustler SALINAS—The Salinas Valley Ag Tech Summit returns to Hartnell College on March 17-18, promising another deep dive into the latest tactics, equipment and thinking to maximize profit and consumer satisfaction in the fresh produce industry. The...

Leaders selected for 2020 Focus Agriculture class

WATSONVILLE—A group of 21 community leaders have been selected for Class 31 of the Focus Agriculture program.   The “first-in-the-nation” program, created by Watsonville’ Agri-Culture organization, is designed to teach community leaders about agriculture in Santa Cruz County and the Pajaro Valley.  After receiving a number...

Land Trust plans Rocks Ranch conservation

AROMAS—The Land Trust of Santa Cruz County plans to protect nearly all of the 2,640-acre Rocks Ranch in Aromas from development, the organization announced Feb. 11. The ranch has been in the spotlight recently following the San Benito County Supervisors’ intent to rezone a portion...

Ag History Project looks ahead

WATSONVILLE—A buggy that once transported people along the streets of San Jose in the 1880s and ‘90s is now on display at the Agricultural History Project, restored and with a fresh coat of paint. Hassan Zamani, who has volunteered with the AHP for two years,...

Local grower on cutting edge of organic farming

WATSONVILLE—About 200 people disembarked three large charter buses on Green Valley Road in Watsonville early Wednesday morning as part of the EcoFarm Bus Tour, a kickoff to the EcoFarm Conference in Pacific Grove this week.  The tour was visiting Strong Agronomy, a management company that...

Monterey Bay Rose Society’s pruning workshops begin

CENTRAL COAST—The California cut flower industry has changed drastically in the last 30 years. Once controlling more than half of cut flower sales in the U.S., it has gradually been overtaken by competition from overseas growers. The Pajaro Valley, once a mecca of rose growing,...
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Newsom lifts stay-at-home order, some services to resume

SACRAMENTO—Outdoor dining and other services can resume after Gov. Gavin Newsom on Monday ended the state’s regional stay-at-home order based on intensive care unit...